Kixeye

www.kixeye.com
Employer Engaged

Kixeye Reviews

Updated February 27, 2015
Updated February 27, 2015
103 Reviews
2.9
103 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Kixeye CEO Will Harbin
Will Harbin
68 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Good Work/Life Balance (most of time) (in 5 reviews)

  • Unlimited PTO, somewhat fun place to work, company outings every now and then (in 8 reviews)


Cons
  • The culture of fear the company said they were moving away from has actually returned with a vengeance (in 9 reviews)

  • Work life balance can be hard sometimes due to the heavy workload, but hey (in 6 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Don't listen to people who were fired.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Product Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Kixeye full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    I was compelled to leave a review after seeing some of the recent reviews. It is true that we laid some people off, but frankly, they needed to go and there are a lot of bitter people who simply want to see the company fail. I very much believe in the company. The legacy titles are still doing well and from what I can tell, the new games have a great chance. I like my job. I like the people I work with. The company treats me well and executive management is transparent and accessible.

    Cons

    Most of the problems are common to a company that scaled a little too fast. We hired a lot of people and spun up too many projects. Some things should have been cancelled a long time ago. Morale in pockets is lower than it should be but I think will improve with time.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I think we are on a good trajectory. Stay the course, but learn from previous mistakes.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Still my favorite job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Principal Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Principal Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Kixeye full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Incredible talent. I have 15 years in the game industry and this is my favorite team so far.
    - Fun projects
    - Good pay

    Cons

    I understand some the gripes, but some of them are isolated to certain teams. It is hot and cold from one side of the company to the other, but it seems to have improved after the re-org.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Maintain focus, listen to your people and keep trying to improve

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  3.  

    Slowly worked my way up

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Producer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Producer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Kixeye full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    - Worked my way up from QA > Project Manager > Product Manager > Producer
    - Competitive salary
    - Funded & profitable
    - Some of the most talented people I've worked with in the last 10 years
    - Free food two days a week from local restaurants (not cheap catering companies)

    Cons

    - Bonus plan is great on paper but has been patchy
    - Churn from re-orgs is disruptive (short term pain)
    - Salary increases lag behind promotions

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Hold more frequent company meetings, I always felt well informed and positive after each one but they are quite few and far between

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5.  

    A toxic culture.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Kixeye

    Pros

    Nice, fun, talented, and highly motivated people, across all parts of the company. KixEye's recruiting team does an incredible job finding and hiring the best people in the gaming industry. If you love games above all else, work at KixEye.

    Cons

    If culture flows from the top, KixEye's CEO's glassdoor approval rating of 17% should tell you pretty much all you need to know about what it's like to work there.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Accept advice to management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6.  

    Executive management interference caused a lot of unnecessary thrashing

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Kixeye full-time (more than a year)

    Pros

    Good salary, good day-to-day perks.

    Cons

    Chaotic changes in direction, inability to stick to a vision, high employee turnover.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hold teams accountable but don't interfere directly.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Great working environment, great projects and perks

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Kixeye

    Pros

    Great Place where to work, normal working hours(considering the loads of hours in other companies)

    Cons

    managements of resources. Company could balance perks and save company money in the long run.

  8. 2 people found this helpful  

    WAS a great company filled with talent but lots of missed opportunities.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at Kixeye full-time

    Pros

    I was with the company for a few years in the art side of things. There was tons of talent everywhere you looked and it made you excited to come to work everyday. The projects were fun and challenging and there were almost no limits to what we could accomplish. There was a very good bonus structure in place when I started and a modest pay bump on your anniversary. There are "unlimited" sick/vacation days, you just have to clear it with management and with a good team and good manager, you can take weeks away. There were times where people were only working 3-4 days a week for a month, only because the team was able to get things done and we weren't crunching.

    Cons

    Management there was constantly in flux. We went through a lot of upper level staff. Early on it felt like we were on leashes being led by the blind. We weren't allowed to really stretch our wings and suggestions were constantly shot down or put in a drawer somewhere. The management staff that came in before I left was the strongest of any company I've worked at. Ideas and conversation were embraced and everyone felt like an essential part of the team. Their downfall came because someone higher than our project managers thought our ideas didn't fall in line with their vision of what the project should've been. There was a push from a number of people to make our project go mobile and someone high up shot down the idea thinking it wasn't plausible. Well guess what, there are mobile games out there that have done it right and they're making tons of money.

    The pay has stagnated lately and it seems the company tries to avoid pay raises at this point. To make matters worse, the wage fixing debacle in Silicon Valley and the animation industries have really made a lot of people question their worth at the company. I for one wasn't happy to learn that I should've been paid 20% more on average. Bonuses are directly tied to profitability of the company and there were ups and downs.

    Finally, "unlimited" vacation days is great on paper but if you're on a team that's constantly slammed or your manager just isn't cooperative, then forget it, you're never taking that trip to anywhere. I dreamt of going on a trip for a month to recuperate after a big push but that never materialized since we'd have milestones just around the corner anyway.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    You had and still have some amazing talent in the pits. Don't just listen to other managers, leads, directors, etc. Ask the grunts for their input and ideas and honestly consider them. They may not fall in line with your vision but some of these ideas will make your games shine and sing.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9. 7 people found this helpful  

    Execs have delusions of competence

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Marketing
    Former Employee - Marketing

    I worked at Kixeye full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Good perks. Fun coworkers. DDR pads. Lots of opportunity to contribute.

    Cons

    Sr. Management had no idea what made them successful but thought they had legendary vision. Failures due to executive micro managing were taken out on the ep/product manager folks. The company just had a big round of layoffs as they try to refocus on mobile, but they are too fast behind kabam abs supercell.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Let the experts you hired work without micromanagement. You're not as smart as you think you are.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 12 people found this helpful  

    Welcome to Hell

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Kixeye full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    * Good drinks (pretty much everything)
    * Beautiful views from the office
    * Very close to BART
    * Lots of swag...

    Cons

    * Kixeye does not know how to make games. They got lucky with a couple clones early on, but since then have not figured out how to make anything even partially original, fun, or lucrative.
    * The executive team is very arrogant, and spread a culture of fear and intimidation.
    * There is no movement-- i.e. you will have an extremely hard time getting promoted. Attrition is much higher than anywhere I've ever worked, so when you prove yourself to one manager, chances are he will be fired and you will need to start over.
    * The engineering team is subpar. There are very few talented engineers there, and the least talented seem to be in leadership.
    * The culture is excessively juvenile. Basically a frat house. I can't even imaging being a woman in that kind of environment.
    * I have worked here for over three years, hundreds of engineers, yet only 1 female engineer.
    * Compensation is kindof a joke. Stock options aren't really a thing. They lure people in with the promise of bonuses but haven't actually paid bonuses out in years.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    * Try being creative, instead of being disappointed when clone after clone fails.
    * Either pay out bonuses, or don't mention them in the interview process.
    * 80/hr work week does not lead to twice the output of a 40/hr work week.
    * Try being nicer.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  11. 3 people found this helpful  

    Great Place to Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Product Manager in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Product Manager in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at Kixeye full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    I love working here. Great place, great friends, engaging work. Lots of autonomy. On my team, hard work and value adds are noticed and rewarded.

    Cons

    They took out my favorite snack one time, but it's okay.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Remember what's gone right and wrong over the last few years. Iterate on failures, duplicate practices that have generated success. Be willing to take the right risks and innovate.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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